Can you remember that indescribable feeling of first falling in love with someone? What if that peak state could be activated within you, at any given time?
We often associate the word love with a romantic relationship. And when we fall in love with someone, we give all the credit for those feelings to that person. But the other person is really just the stimulus for achieving that state of being. The truth is, that state is always available to us, and some would argue, it’s our default spiritual state.
We’ve been talking a lot lately about how to harness your ability to choose how you experience each moment of your life, regardless of your outer circumstances. Today, we’re going to dive deeper into that theme from a different angle, specifically discussing how you can choose to make love your default way of experiencing life, even when life is difficult (aka sucks).
- Why love in our society is misunderstood and almost always thought of in terms of romantic love—and why love is our fundamental state.
- How COVID has helped me live in a state of love and joy, even as I’ve faced setbacks and challenges
- How approaching meditation in a different way can help you get into an optimal state.
- Why living intentionally and consciously accepting life as it is can help you stop emotions from getting the best of you.
When we’re reactive, we’re experiencing life as we used to be, reacting based on past programming, which often was handed down to us.” – Hal Elrod
Resisting reality is wishing and wanting that something were different that cannot be different.” – Hal Elrod
THIS EPISODE IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY:
- Organifi makes the highest quality nutritional products, which are made from whole food ingredients (not synthetic vitamins) that I enjoy nearly every day, and have for many years. Visit Organifi.com/Hal, and use the code HAL at checkout to get 15% off of your entire order. I hope you find something there that you love! :^)
- Self-Publishing School has enabled hundreds of members of the Miracle Morning Community (including my sister) to write and publish their first book. If you’ve ever wanted to write a book, whether to share your story, to positively impact people lives, to create a source of passive income – or all of the above – check out this free training I recently did with Chandler Bolt on how to go from “Blank Page to Published Author In As Little As 90 Days” at Self-PublishingSchool.com/Hal and turn your dream of writing a book into a reality! :^)
- Episode 393: How To Experience Both Types Of Freedom
- Episode 317: What Should You Focus On Right Now?
- Who Do We Choose To Be?: Facing Reality, Claiming Leadership, Restoring Sanity
- The Inner Work: An Invitation to True Freedom and Lasting Happiness
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Hal Elrod: Welcome to the Achieve Your Goals Podcast. This is your host, Hal Elrod, and thank you so much for tuning in today and listening. Every week, to me, it's a privilege that you listen. So, I really don't take it for granted and I appreciate it so thank you. And, of course, I do my best to make sure you're going to get a lot of value from each episode, and today is no different. In fact, today was kind of impromptu, though. Today's a Monday. Normally, I record on Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday and I was at lunch watching a documentary and it inspired me. I just felt compelled. I came in here, hit record, and just started talking. And I think what came out is really going to be helpful for you. We're going to talk today it's really following on the track of how can you choose your experience of life, that inner freedom we've been talking about, but it's a distinction. It's a different distinction. It's really around love. It's the difference between romantic love and the feelings of love that you generate when you're in the midst of romantic love and understanding that you have the power to generate those feelings at any given time as your primary default way of being, your primary state.
So, imagine like the person you were most in love with or just think back like when you used to stay up late talking on the phone and you were just head over heels in love. Imagine those feelings, those butterflies in your stomach that felt so good that you didn't want to get off the phone. You wanted to just keep talking to that person and stretch it out as long as you could and then imagine those feelings. Consider that you can live in that state most of the time. Like, how cool would that be, right? But it's true, you have that ability and that's what we're talking about today is how can you experience not romantic love but a transcendent love, a spiritual love, an unconditional love not just for another person but for life itself, for yourself, for the world, for other people. It's not even for anything. It's not direct. You don’t have to direct the love at anything. Just imagine those feelings, that state of being, and imagine that being your default. That's what we're talking about how to do today.
And before we dive in, I have two sponsors that I want to thank, two good friends of mine. Drew Canole owns Organifi and Organifi makes some of the highest quality whole food nutritional supplements on planet Earth that I take every single day. And if you have a busy schedule, it's hard to get all your nutrients on the go. You're eating fast food. It's hard to find healthy restaurants out and about. And even if you had time to juice vegetables or eat massive salads, you might not love the taste of dark leafy greens, but a lack of nutrition, it equals a lack of energy. It equals bad moods and all sorts of other long-term health issues. And that's why I love Organifi because they make it easy to fill your life with more nutrition using delicious superfood blends. You just open a packet or grab a scoop, put it in a glass of water or a cup of almond milk or whatever, your smoothie. That's what I do a lot. And it energizes and nourishes you throughout the day. So, head over to Organifi.com/Hal and check out their products. They have a lot of different options for giving you energy throughout the day, boosting your nutrition, but also there are different powders for the evening when you want to rest and relax and calm yourself so you can get a good night's sleep. Again, Organifi.com/Hal and use the code “HAL” at checkout to get 15% off your entire order.
And last but not least, I want to mention our other sponsor, Self-Publishing School, ran by my long-time friend, Chandler Bolt. And if you've ever wanted to write a book, this is your chance. Self-Publishing School will show you the fastest, most effective, systematic way to go from even if you have no idea what you want to write about to having a finished book in as little as 90 days. And it's no joke. Hundreds of members of our community have already gone through Self-Publishing school and done this, and you can get their free resources to start and see if it's a good fit for you. Head over to Self-PublishingSchool.com/Hal so that Chandler Bolt and his team can help you turn your dream of writing a book into a reality.
And without further ado, in my mind, the most important, crucial, relevant competency for us all to develop, the ability to choose how we feel, how we experience life in any given moment, and fundamentally having that experience be one of love. Let's talk about it.
Hal Elrod: Hello, my friends and my fellow human beings, members of this human family. This is Hal Elrod and thank you for tuning in today. This is kind of an impromptu podcast, meaning I wasn't planning on recording for a couple of days but I was just watching a documentary on Gaia. And if you're not familiar with Gaia, it is not just the word, but it's an actual streaming service and, essentially, it's all conscious programming. So, a lot of conscious documentaries and that sort of thing, spiritual films. I was watching a film today. I've been watching it on my lunch break over the last, actually a few weeks, kind of like ten minutes here and there, and it's called Becoming Nobody and it's about Ram Dass. And if you are a spiritual seeker, if you dabble in spiritual genre literature, you're likely familiar with Ram Dass. Interestingly enough, I only started following his work, gosh, I don't know, six months ago so I'm really late to the party. Some of you were looking and you're going, “What? Hal, you just discovered, just started listening to Ram Dass?” And yes, the answer is yes. Of all of these spiritual teachers that I have learned from, he's one of probably the most well-known and maybe not actually. You know, I don't know. I think he's probably in certain circles.
But anyway, here's the point. I was watching the documentary today and he started talking about love. And I really resonated with the way he talked about it and he talked about that love is something that in our society, in our world, typically when you see images of love, you see some sort of romantic love, right? Usually, love is it's a man and a woman typically, or a woman and a woman, or a man and a man, whatever it may be, but it's usually like between two people and they're looking into each other's eyes or there's usually a heart. The heart emoji or the shape of a heart is very much affiliated with, associated with love. And so, we think of love as romantic love, typically love between two people, love as an external, existing externally between us, between you, between me and another person. And Ram Dass explained and I'm completely paraphrasing. I didn't take notes on it or anything so I'm just going off memory here. But he shared that when you meet someone that you fall in love with, what's actually happening is it's simply that that person is becoming a stimulus that is enabling you to experience love. You could say an emotion. Love is an emotion, love as a state of being, and as an all-encompassing spiritual reality. But when you meet the person, when you fall in love with the person, that person enables you or I should say enables you but they become a stimulus for you to experience love. And Ram Dass talked about how that experience of love is always available to us.
Think about that for a second. You think, “I met this person. Oh, my gosh, I think I'm in love. I think I'm in love with that person,” when the reality is that person just was a stimulus for you to experience the state of love. And there are other descriptions of love. You know, in a religious or spiritual sense, it might be God's love or unconditional love but, I don't know, it really spoke to me in thinking about how can we experience that state of love, not romantic love, but the kind that you feel when you are experiencing romantic love. But how can that transcend every aspect of your life? And I feel that, for me, I guess this is why it resonated because this is the journey that I've been on. I don't know how long. I mean, I guess it's a 42-years-long journey but it feels kind of recent. I've really been experiencing that state all the time. And I think it goes back to what I've been talking about for the last year, which is inner freedom. We went in-depth on that a couple of weeks ago talking about the two types of freedom, outer freedom and inner freedom, and how to experience both. And quick refresher on the definition, I define outer freedom is your ability to get yourself to do what you need to do to create the results, the outcomes, and the circumstances that you want for your life. So, you say, "Hey, I want to get in great shape,” and outer freedom is the ability to get yourself to do the things you need to do, to exercise, to have the discipline to not eat the foods that are unhealthy, the discipline to eat the foods that are healthy. So, to actually take action, physical actions that will create the results, the outcomes, the circumstance that you want. That's how I define outer freedom.
Inner freedom is our ability to choose how we feel in any given moment, how we experience life. So, even if life is chaotic or crazy as it is right now globally, many of us would probably agree, and in our individual lives as well, in different ways, there's always chaos. There's always challenges, there's always adversity. But inner freedom is the ability that even no matter what's going on around us, outside of us, that we have the ability, the freedom to choose how we experience life, “Oh, my gosh, I'm experiencing a tragedy in my outer world but I'm at peace in my inner world.” “Wow. Right now, I'm going through some stuff that it's really stressful in my life. I've got some financial challenges that are creating stress. I've got my significant other and I, we're fighting a lot and we're estranged or whatever.” That's my outer world. But I'm choosing to be happy at peace in my inner world. And that's my freedom, my inner freedom. I'm exercising that right to choose how I experience life no matter what is going on in my life. And so, I think that it is very much when I ask myself because as I've talked about in the last few weeks like one of the first steps is you have to decide how you want to feel, like you have to decide what do you want your experience to be. Do you want your experience of life to be stressful, to be fearful, or do you want it to be joyful? Do you want it to be an experience where you experience life in a state of freedom and lightness and love and compassion? And how do you want to experience life? That’s step one is you've got to get clear. You have to decide on that intentionally or you'll just be reactive to whatever life throws at you and your pre-programmed responses to that.
So, for the last, you know, ever since I really doubled down on this concept, about a year, year-and-a-half ago, after COVID hit, ever since I did that, I think that love like when I ask how do I want to experience life, I want to experience it in a state of love, in a state of joy. I want to enjoy every moment of this one life I've been given. And let me give you a quick distinction on that. You might go, “Well, Hal, yeah, it's one thing to enjoy life when everything is okay. But if you're experiencing pain, any form of pain, I can't just enjoy every moment. Some of the moments are painful.” And I'm going to invite you to consider, can you enjoy the pain? Can you enjoy the moments that are painful? Can you find joy in every moment of your life, no matter what's going on in your life, no matter how difficult it is? And I'm going to share a laugh because I have an insecurity around, it's weird, as much as my default is I always share my stories from my own life partly because my memory sucks and I have trouble remembering other people's stories, but I have an insecurity about resharing stories I've shared before. So, bear with me here. So, this one story I've heard a few times, and it's funny. I've had people tell me like close to me, my wife I think, she goes, "Don't share that story.” It's true, though. It was a really profound experience. So, some of you are like you're curious now, “Okay. Wow. Where is he going with this?” But, yeah, definitely had my wife tell me not to share the story, so I'm going to share it anyway. I've shared it probably a couple of times on the podcast over the years.
I was 21. No, no, maybe 22, 23, early 20s, and I was living in Sacramento, California. And I went to a party at UC Davis and so some friends of mine invited me to go to this party. So, I guess it was a college party now that I'm thinking about it but I was definitely out of college and went to the party and had way too much to drink and got really sick. And everybody's having a great time in the party and I realized, "Oh, my gosh, I think I'm going to throw up.” And I went out front and I sat on this, I remember sitting on this bench out in front of the apartment. And I don't know about you but I do not enjoy throwing up. I'd imagine, you know, I think most people really don't enjoy throwing up. But as I sat there and I was like I'm about to throw up, I had this really spiritual moment where I went, "Wait a minute. Okay. I'm about to throw up. What if I could just enjoy this since it's going to happen anyway, right?” Like, I think it's coming. There's no stopping it. It's not in my control at this point. I already did the deed. I put myself in a position, now I’d have to experience this. I thought, "Why don't I enjoy it like thoroughly enjoy it?” And so, of course, I started throwing up and as I'm heaving, as I'm expelling what I drink, I'm smiling and I'm literally smiling and, I mean, it was unpleasant but I'm just enjoying it. I go, "That's my right and my ability. And it's your ability. It's our ability to literally enjoy every moment of our lives.”
And I realized that for many of you, probably it's a little bit maybe it doesn't jive or it feels - what's the word I'm looking for? I'm not controversial but you might be going, "How would I enjoy throwing up or how would I enjoy pain?” And this is a real paradigm shift. It's a real paradigm shift to decide that I've been given one life and I'm going to enjoy every moment of that life. And so, that for me was I went, "Wow. If I could genuinely…” because I wasn't faking it. It wasn't like I was pretending to enjoy throwing up so I could share it on a podcast 20 years later. That wasn't it. It was genuinely like it was a test. It was, can I enjoy? By simply making the decision, the conscious decision, can I enjoy something that I don't actually normally enjoy? Can I enjoy something that normally I would avoid at all costs? And I thought, "If I can enjoy this, I can enjoy anything.” And so, that's why I say it was a real spiritual breakthrough for me and I enjoyed it. And I remember I had some friends come out and check on me and they’re like, "Oh, buddy, I'm so sorry. How are you doing?” I'm like, "No. This is great, man. This is great. I'm alive. I'm here. I'm with you. I'm throwing up. It's great. I'm enjoying every moment.” And so, that was a breakthrough. And then I've applied that in many what would otherwise be unpleasant moments throughout my life. And the other one is, and I think I shared this in the last couple of weeks in one of my stories, but when I was in the hospital with cancer, I enjoyed every moment. I enjoyed the painful moments. Now, there were 11 days where I had migraines and I definitely didn't enjoy those actually. It was so unbearable. The pain was so unbearable.
But that's not totally true because there is a scene in the Miracle Morning Movie, you may have seen it, and it was one I recorded without the intention of sharing it with anybody. I actually told my dad, I go, “Dad,” I was crying. I was bawling my eyes out in the hospital bed and I was on day, I don't even know, eight or nine of having a migraine. They had given me a spinal injection and missed the mark and hit a nerve and injected fluid chemotherapy into a nerve which they weren't supposed to do, and it created these horrific non-stop migraines around the clock. Nothing worked. Morphine, they tried morphine, nothing eases the pain. And I said, “Dad,” I said, “I want you to record this.” I said, “I want you to record this moment. I want to capture the bad moments too, the difficult moments too.” And my dad was like it killed him. He's watching me like just bawling my eyes out in this horrible, indescribable pain like I've never experienced before. And he hit record and I think I talked for like 20 minutes. My head hurts so bad that I was like repeating myself and rambling but the point is, as I'm crying and I'm saying, "Look, I've captured a lot of moments where I'm in a great state and things I'm in a good mood and I've shared those,” I said, "but I want to capture all the moments, the real moments.” And I said, "Look, I am in horrific pain right now but to the best of my abilities, I am enjoying every moment of this. Now, I'd rather not have the pain but since I have the pain, I'm not going to live in delusion wishing. Like, this is my reality so I'm going to enjoy my reality.”
And I said, "This doesn't change that I am grateful for every single moment of my life, including this one.” And so, again, I'm sharing that with you, not to say look at me and I can handle pain. I'm sharing that with you just as an example from that I can draw from my own life, whether it's throwing up at a party and deciding consciously, “I'm going to enjoy this moment.” Or going back to Ram Dass’s talking about that state of love, I'm going to live my life in a state of love, not romantic love, but like spiritual love, like the purest, most limitless, boundless love that a human being can experience. That's the experience that I'm choosing to live life in, in every possible moment. And when I say every possible because there are moments where for sure I get unconscious, right? I get reactive. If something happens, I get triggered, whatever. My past programming comes up and I get angry or I get upset or I get sad or whatever. But then as soon as I catch myself and I become aware, I go, "Oh, wait a minute, I'm not experiencing life as I choose right now. I'm experiencing life in a reactive state. I'm experiencing life based on who I used to be instead of who I choose to be.” You catch that, right? When we're reactive, we're experiencing life as we used to be, reacting based on past programming, which often was handed down to us.
If one of your parents or your parents got angry in situations where things didn't go their way and you witnessed that enough that was embedded in your psychology, right? Neural pathways were created and reinforced every time your parent got angry in a situation. Maybe it was traffic. And then when you're in traffic, now you get angry. You're not intentionally choosing how you're going to experience your life in those moments. You are reacting based on who you used to be instead of who you choose to be. So, going back to this Ram Dass talking point about love, so I just want to reiterate what I said earlier and based on what Ram Dass shared, which is that, oh, and by the way, before I forget, I am going to share a new meditation today. I'll probably mention this in the intro so that you guys are aware. But a new simple meditation that I started practicing that's been really powerful, really transformative, and it's only about a week or two new for me, so I want to share it with you. You all try it. Give me feedback. Let me know how it's going for you and I'm going to continue to evolve it and keep trying it out and keep learning. So, yeah, I'll get to that. But back to the love piece, so as Ram Dass was saying, think about in your own life when you've met someone, when you fell in love, when you met somebody. Think about when you met somebody and you felt feelings of elation, feelings of joy. Just like, "Wow. I feel so good.”
Maybe it's the first time you fell in love. You go, “I don’t even know how to describe this. I've never felt this way before.” But like most of the emotions that most people experience, we blame it on somebody else. When you get angry, you blame it on somebody else or you blame it on something else.” Of course, I'm angry. Look at what he did. Look at what she did. Look at what happened.” And you go, "Of course, I'm in love. Look at her. Look at him. Isn't she amazing?” So, think about that for a second. We blame our internal state on our external world, and I've talked about this in the context only of blaming negative, painful, distressing emotions. So, I think this might be the first time I've ever talked about blaming other people or things, blaming external forces for how we feel. I think it’s the first time we ever talked about it in terms of when we feel good. You blame, “I'm in love because of that person. I'm in love with them.” But the reality is think about the feelings that you feel. Try to get in touch with just like maybe close your eyes for a second. Put your hand on your heart. Take a breath and just think about like picture a person that you fell in love with once. Maybe it's the person you're with now. Maybe it's somebody before them. Maybe it's your first love. But just picture that person. Try to get back to when you first fell in love. And if this is helpful, think about when you're talking on the phone with them until like midnight, 1:00, 2:00 in the morning, maybe 6:00 in the morning all night long.
At least for me when I was younger, like I don't do that anymore, but when I was in my 20s or younger, you meet a girl. We hit it off and I'm physically attracted to her. We have some things in common. I just like her personality. Something about her attracts me to her. And so, I don't want to get off the phone and we stayed talking to like midnight to 1:00 in the morning, and I'm so excited and I go to bed with butterflies in my stomach. You've been there before, right? And that's what I'm talking about. And I want you to think about that and realize that all of those feelings that you had toward that other person, you generated them. They were all within you and they were available to you at all times. No one ever told you that. And it took an external stimulus in the form of another person to bring about those feelings. But what I'm sharing with you or inviting you to consider now is that you can choose that state, that mental, emotional, spiritual state at any given time. That can be your default way of experiencing life. Think about that for a second. The most in love you've ever felt with another person can be your default daily state of being. I don't know. I'm speechless like that's profound. That's profound. And I'll tell you, for me, that's the focus of my meditations. The focus of my meditations is to get into an optimal state based on what I decide is optimal, to get in an optimal state and just sit there and marinate for as long as I have time, for as long as I can, usually 20 or 30 minutes.
And I book in my day with that. I do it first thing in the morning. First thing in the morning, I go to my couch, make some green tea. I have half a cup of like green tea to give me a little caffeine, kind of get my wake me up, get me alert, and then I meditate. And I don't use a timer anymore. I just go for as long as it feels good and it's weird to kind of feel complete when I feel complete and it's usually around 5, 10, 20, 30 minutes depending on the day. And then at night, I do the same thing. When I lay down for bed, I just get into the state, I decide how do I want to feel? And I don't have to really think about it much because I do it every day. I don’t even know how to describe the feeling. I could say I guess love. I just get into a state of love, of gratitude, of joy, and to me, it's all kind of one. You know what I mean? Like, well, I was in a state of gratitude this time but next time I'll be in a state of love like, honestly, I don't know what the difference is. I don't know the difference. When I feel grateful, to me, that's like the ultimate form of love or maybe vice versa. I don't know. It's just this beautiful state, bliss. Maybe bliss is a great word for the state that I try to enter into and that I'm inviting you to enter into because it's just kind of a mish-mash of all the beautiful, positive emotions, right?
You know, I'm feeling love. I'm feeling joy. I'm feeling gratitude. I'm feeling excitement. Man, is this what bliss feels like? I think so. I think so, right? I think so. That's bliss, right? That's bliss. And I don't know if you hear me say this before but I'm going to remind you that in life, you can be stressed out or you can be blissed out. The choice is yours. And it has little to do with what's going on around you and everything to do with what's going on inside of you. That is inner freedom. You get to choose how you feel regardless of what's going on outside of you. You get to choose how you experience life in any given moment. You can be throwing up at a college party, convulsing and heaving, and going, “I am experiencing joy. This is uncomfortable. This is painful. You know, it wouldn't be my first choice how to spend an evening but it's how I’m spending the evening so it is what it is.” And there is acceptance in all of this. Acceptance is kind of the underlying foundation for all of this. You've got to accept your life exactly as it is, therefore, be at peace with your life exactly as it is, and then from that place of peace, which is really emotionally neutral.
If you think about it, imagine I'm holding it both of my hands right now, about two feet from each side of my face. So, I got my right hand over here to the right of my face, about two feet, my left hand to the left, and I'm kind of moving them in circles. And imagine that all of your positive emotions that feel good are over here on the right, my right hand. So, if you want to hold your hands up, you can play with this. It might help you remember it better. Put up both of your hands. The right hand, move it in a circle. It’s just a small little circle, just kind of waving it. Little circle. This represents all of the positive emotions in life that you can experience, happiness, excitement, joy, all over the positive. Then the left hand, move it in a little circle. That represents all of your, if you're driving right now, unless you have a self-driving Tesla, make sure you have your hands on the wheel. But anyway, the left hand represents all the painful emotions, sadness and anger and fear and regret and all the emotions that we usually wouldn't choose and that we try to avoid typically. And then if you take your right hand, which represents the whole plethora of positive emotions, you take your left hand that represents the plethora of painful emotions and you bring your right hand to center with your palm facing the other hand, and then you bring your left hand to center and you bring them into what is often referred to as prayer position.
That is, in my mind, in between those positive emotions on the right, pleasant emotions on the right, and the painful emotions on the left when you put your hands together in between is a state of peace. And see, peace is emotionally neutral which is why that prayer position is just such a beautiful visual and a representation of an ever-present state of being that is known as peace or sometimes referred to as inner peace. And the way you achieve inner peace is through acceptance, accepting life exactly as it is, or often the word surrender is used. You surrender your preferences. You accept life exactly as it is, and in doing so you experience peace. It doesn't mean you're happy that something painful is happening or that you're throwing up, or that you have cancer and that the nurse accidentally injected your nerve with chemotherapy and now you have 11 days of migraines. That doesn't mean you're happy about it but here's the thing, happiness is an emotion and emotions are fleeting. You ever been happy before and a phone call changed that, right? You're happy and then somebody calls and gives you “bad news” and you're like, "No, no, I was in such a good mood and now it's ruined.”
So, emotions are fleeting but when you live your life intentionally and consciously accepting all of life exactly as it is, all the things you can't change, accepting them as they are, doesn't mean that you aren't going to work to change them in the future but in this moment, life is exactly as it is. Think about that for a second. That moment I just referenced, I said in this moment, that was what? About 12 seconds ago? Could anything of that moment have been different than it was? No. See, that's one of the questions I get when I talk about this. People will go, “But, Hal, if I just accept life exactly as it is, then…” Sorry. I don't mean to do it like a condescending voice. “Hal, if I accept life exactly as it is, doesn't that mean that I'm just giving up, that I'm not taking initiative to change things?” I don’t know. I didn't say don't change things. I said accept things exactly as they are when they are exactly as they are, and then change whatever you want. But don't delusionally invest energy into resisting your reality, wishing that something that is out of your control in this moment were different, or wishing the past were different, which is also out of your control.
So, acceptance, I bring this in because in some ways, if I don't talk about this piece, the acceptance piece, the surrender piece, the accepting life exactly as it is and finding that inner peace, then if I tell you to choose a state of love, to choose joy or gratitude, to choose your experience, if you don't have the awareness that what's causing all of your emotional pain is resisting reality, is your resistance to reality and the only way to remove that emotional pain like permanently to get to the root of it is to trade in your resistance for acceptance. And then once you do that, once you make a conscious decision that I can't change the things that are out of my control. I can't change life exactly as it is in this moment. It is as it is. I could do something now to start making a change and that change might happen in a minute or in a year but living in a perpetual state of acceptance enables you to live in a perpetual state of freedom, free from the emotional pain that we create when we resist reality and a simple - I prefer using the words wishing and wanting - resisting reality is wishing and wanting that something were different that cannot be different.
Right now, talking to you, resisting the reality of my bank account balance, wishing it were more, that doesn't change the bank account balance. It just causes me to feel lack and scarcity and fear and pain. By resisting the reality of my bank account balance, I create emotional distress and turmoil but that doesn't change the bank account balance. When I accept my bank account balance exactly as it is even if it's not the amount that I want it to be, I'm at peace. And now from a place of peace, I can be proactive. See, from a place of fear, when you're emotionally distressed, that's never the best place to be proactive. I mean, chemically, biologically, not to mention psychologically like you're not in a great state. Think about that. But when you accept your bank account balance exactly as it is, you can be at peace, you can be clear-headed, you can be emotionally neutral, and then you can from that place of that space, you can go, “Okay. I'm at peace with my bank account balance but I don't like it. I don't want it to be there. So, what can I do? Where do I want to go with that?” And this again, I'm using bank account balance. Apply that to anything. If you wish and want that someone in your life were different, “I wish she didn't do that. I wish she were different. I wish she didn't say these things. I wish she didn't treat me like that. I wish she remembered that,” that doesn't change the person. It just creates emotional distress for you.
Instead, you say, “I accept this person exactly as they are. They are who they are so I'm delusional to live as wishing they were different than they are. They are who they are. So, I’m going to accept it, be at peace with it.” And then from a place of emotional neutrality, from a place of calm, from inner peace, when you can think clearly, you can then make the right decisions. Maybe that person you don't want to be around them anymore. Or maybe you can look in yourself and go, “What about me gets triggered by the way that they are?” That's a lot more empowering. What can you change within yourself? You can't change another person. You can try. Eventually, you might be able to. The people are who they are for the most part. You can also, of course, share come from a place of calm, conscious communication where you say, "Hey, do you mind if I share something with you and I'm not trying to offend you or anything, but there is something that just kind of it's been weighing on me a little bit and I wanted to share it.” And they're going to say, they might go, "Screw you,” or they might say, "Yeah. Well, what is it? What's bothering you?” You go, "Well, when you do this or when you say this, look, you have every right to say that and do that. You are who you are. But when you say this or when you do this, personally, it hurts my feelings or I get upset or I get triggered. I'm sure it's something within me like I'm reacting from maybe my childhood or whatever.”
Like, the more you can own it, the better. But you go, “I just want to let you know that and you can do with it what you will.” Like, I think that's a really good way to communicate with somebody. You let them know how their behavior affects you. You don't blame them. You don't shame them. You don't wrong them. They're allowed to do what they want and be who they are. And if that bothers you, if it offends you, you decide what you're going to do. Are you going to be around that person? Are you going to communicate that to them? I'm off on a tangent, but hopefully, this is helpful. I'm sure some of you were like, "Oh my gosh, I need to have this conversation with somebody and this is not the way I normally talk to them. I normally get triggered and get pissed off and get upset. It doesn't seem to work very well.” So, maybe try a different approach. So, like I said, the foundation of being able to have inner freedom and I'm going to write about this in my next book, I have already written about it in the next book, and by the way, until my next book comes out, I recommend this today on social media. I recommend the book, The Inner Work. I'm not affiliated with these people. I don't make a commission off of it. It's the book I was going to write or pretty dang close to it so now I'm adjusting. But I know some of our listeners have said, "Hal, I'm ready for your next book, like get it done.” This is the closest thing that you can read that I'm aware of to the book that I'm working on and that I've been working on.
It's called The Inner Work: An Invitation to True Freedom and Lasting Happiness. I got mine off Amazon. You can find it there. The author's name is Mathew Micheletti, something like that. But just look up The Inner Work and the cover is like dark purple and a bubbly with like a little weird happy face thing at the bottom that's square-shaped. So, anyway, go get that book if you would like to go deeper on all these topics that we're talking about because they did a really, really good job like literally one of the best books I've ever read and I'll probably have him on the podcast at some point. All right. I think that's good. And then hopefully you got what you came here for today. And again, just to circle back, this all started on my lunch break today. I was watching a documentary called Becoming Nobody about Ram Dass, and Ram Dass talked about how our view of love is typically romantic love. But when we fall in love with somebody, all it is a stimulus that enables us to experience feelings of love, of God, of whatever you want to call it that are available to us at all times. And so, on this track of inner freedom that we've been on for the last year or so, I just wanted to add this to it, that you can choose. Remember, imagine the most in love you've ever felt with another person and then realize that those feelings, those emotions are available to you at all times. So, experience them more often. That's my encouragement and invitation to you.
Hal Elrod: Speaking of love, I love you so much. Seriously, thank you so much for listening to the podcast. And by the way, I've done this maybe a handful of times in my entire podcasting career. Would you leave a review? I always forget. Head over to iTunes or wherever you listen to podcasts. Could you leave a quick review like probably take you up maybe five minutes total, but it would mean a lot to me. I've heard like it's good when you get reviews and that's why most podcasters, they ask for them on every single episode. And I probably should too but I always forget. But I remembered so there we go. A lot of fun stuff in the works. The Miracle Morning app is in development. Actually, just got the beta version sent to me today. So, I've not even mentioned that to you, guys, but that's been on the list for like ten years, nine years, or something like that. But, finally, my good friend, Josh Eidenberg, persisted, persisted, persisted. He said, "Hal, we need an app,” and so we created an app so that's exciting. So, I'll let you know when it's available. I'm not sure exactly when. Probably the next few months. And, yeah, I think that's it.
All right. Love you more than you know. And my wish for you is that you experience love and joy and gratitude, a.k.a. bliss, in as many moments of your life as possible because that state is always available to you and you deserve to enjoy it. You deserve to enjoy this one life that you've been blessed with no matter what's going on around you. So, let's stop giving away our power to our circumstances. Let's stop saying, “I feel bad because of this thing happening. I'm sad, I'm scared, I'm depressed, I'm angry because of it, him, her, them.” No more. Let's say, "Yeah. It, him, her and them, they're all doing their thing but I'm choosing to enjoy this one life I've been blessed with.” Love you, guys and gals. I'll talk to you all next week. Take care.
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